WRPA OKs Severance for Former Airport Director Dan Dickten

Western Reserve Port Authority Seeks New Aviation Director

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The Western Reserve Port Authority will search locally and within the aviation community a new director of aviation for Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport.

The port authority Monday that Dan Dickten had resigned as aviation director at the Vienna Township airport. Dickten was hired in April 2010. His most recent contract, for two years, expired Saturday.

“Dan wants to move on and do other things with his life,” John Moliterno, WRPA executive director, said in a phone interview . “We appreciate the time that he has spent in Youngstown and wish him the best in his next step.”

Dickten was unavailable for comment.

Moliterno described the parting as “amicable” but said Dickten did not provide a reason for his resignation.

“That wasn’t my business,” he said. “He has some options that are available to him.”

“The board of directors appreciates Dan’s hard work and dedication,” added Marty Loney, chairman of the port authority board.

Moliterno pointed to several highlights of Dickten’s service at the airport, including strong monthly performance by Allegiant Air during much of the airline’s time at the airport, which ended in January. Projects he oversaw included the $4.5 million midfield taxiway upgrade and an interior and exterior renovation of the airport terminal that included new carpeting, painting, a new backup generator and upgraded baggage handling operation.

Dickten’s tenure was marked by efforts to secure daily scheduled service to cater to the business market. Great Lakes JetExpress, operated by Aerodynamics Inc. for just two months in 2016, ended its service to Chicago after the port authority pulled the subsidy it provided to support the service because of low passenger counts and the airline’s failure to secure interline agreements.

The port authority also paid to settle a pair of sexual harassment claims against Dickten lodged by two former female employees. Dickten denied both women’s claims.

Asked whether the settlements were a factor in Dickten’s decision to resign, Moliterno responded, “No comment.”

Moliterno will serve as aviation director of the airport until a new one is hired, he said.

“We will take our time to try to do this properly,” he said. “The time frame has yet to be determined but we’ll start that process pretty soon.”

Moliterno noted that he will continue to talk to airlines to bring commercial traffic to the airport.

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.